Substance use disorders are not age-specific; anyone can be affected at any time in their life. Some addicts have been abusing drugs and alcohol since they were in elementary school, while others did not begin start until they were in their 50s. There is no age limit for inpatient treatment, but you may need to find an age-specific treatment center that can help address your needs.
The Role of Age in Addiction
Age makes a difference in the effects of substance abuse. For example, pre-teens and adolescents who start abusing drugs are more likely to continue to abuse them throughout adulthood. This also increases their risk of committing a crime, living in poverty, having unhealthy or abusive relationships and suffering from a mental illness.
Older adults and senior citizens face their own unique challenges; they may suffer greater health complications as a result of their substance abuse, or they could develop an addiction as they try to self-medicate and cope with the loss, change, and side-effects of aging.
Some older people may feel like they are beyond help as most treatment typically feels geared toward people in their 20s and 30s. Everyone has their own addiction story, but people in certain age groups face particular challenges and risk factors that need to be addressed in their treatment program.
Inpatient Substance Abuse Treatment for Teenagers
Teen addiction is a major problem that can hinder an adolescent’s entire future, especially since their brains are not yet fully developed. They cannot recognize the same consequences and risks as adults.
Teenagers may benefit from a juvenile inpatient addiction center. Here, they will receive the education and counseling they need to cope with the pressures many adolescents face. They will also learn how to develop healthy coping strategies for the future, so they can move forward after their recovery and lay the foundation for a productive, sober life.
What Are Age-Specific Rehabs?
Age-specific rehabs offer addiction treatment and substance abuse counseling to people in a particular age group, usually adolescents or seniors. Elderly patients may need specialized care for their health conditions while teenagers need to feel respected, understood and valuable despite their young age.
In a generalized inpatient program, people from various background commingle. This can sometimes result in misunderstandings. People with large age gaps think differently about the world, and their perspectives can cause conflict and major disagreements that only add to the stress of trying to overcome addiction.
At an age-specific rehab, patients are divided into certain age groups and receive treatment along with their peers. The same types of services are offered, but there will be a greater focus on the challenges people in each age group experience.
Am I Too Old to Go to Rehab?
You are never too old to treat your addiction. At any age, the desire and choice to stop substance abuse is what matters most. Even if you have gone through rehab and relapsed in the past, there are new opportunities and treatment available that can help you.
Rehab teaches you to learn from your mistakes. You are not defined by your addiction or relapse, even if it has dominated most of your life. There is no age limit to go to inpatient counseling, but you may benefit from an age-specific rehab if you suffer from particular health conditions.
Some substance abuse clinics are not equipped to provide round-the-clock medical care or living assistance that some older patients require. For this reason, elderly drug rehab can offer a level of attention and assistance that older adults need during their recovery.
Putting Your Child in Inpatient Treatment
The decision to check your child into an inpatient rehab is difficult, but it is ultimately in their best interest. Parents whose teenagers have become unresponsive and are endangering their lives need to intervene now before their child can harm themselves further.
Your teen may have gotten in trouble with the law and be mandated to receive some type of therapy. Inpatient treatment can address substance abuse while also providing mental health counseling.
The average onset age for 50 percent of mental illnesses is 14; your child may be abusing drugs or alcohol to cope with the symptoms of an undiagnosed psychiatric disorder. If your teen refuses to get help, talking to the staff at rehab can help you stage an intervention and figure out the next step.
Contact us today at 866-300-6707 to learn more about inpatient treatment options near you. Our representatives are on-call 24-hours a day, seven days a week to answer any questions about addiction and recovery.
Medically Reviewed: September 25, 2019
All of the information on this page has been reviewed and verified by a certified addiction professional.